PDA Decision Making and Innovation SCQF level 9

The PDA in Decision Making and Innovation at SCQF level 9 is about developing skills in decision making and contributing to the process of promoting and introducing innovative ideas into an organisation. It involves the analysis of decision making and innovation and requires candidates to make specific proposals for innovation and evaluate the way decisions — about innovation for example — have been made. Innovation is critical to organisations in the increasingly complex and fast moving environments in which organisations have to operate.

This qualification is jointly certificated by SQA and the Chartered Management Institute (CMI).

The PDA in Decision Making and Innovation consists of two practical Units and has been designed to suit candidates who are employed. Candidates will be supported by a qualified assessor and can work through their qualification at their own pace. However, it is likely that assessment plans agreed between assessor and candidate will include target dates for completion of specific parts of each Unit.

Some features of the PDA are:

  • it provides recognition of innovation and decision making skills
  • it enables progression within the Management HN framework
  • it enhances career prospects
  • there are no formal entry requirements
  • it is jointly certificated by SQA and CMI

The target group for the PDA in Decision Making and Innovation is managers who have a specific remit for innovation in organisations, as well as managers who wish to enhance their awareness and understanding of the innovative process.

Successful candidates can gain membership of the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) which means that they can become part of the professional community of managers and can benefit from the development opportunities this can bring.

Candidates who complete this PDA will have gained the following:

  • two of the twelve credits needed for the HNC in Management
  • three of the 18 credits needed for the Diploma in Management

The PDA also offers progression to the SVQs in Management. Depending on the extent of their management responsibility candidates may progress to the level 4 or level 5 SVQ (SCQF levels 9 or 11).

Centres with devolved authority for approval should use their own internal approval process.

Centres without devolved authority require to come forward for approval and should contact SQA's Business Development Team for guidance.

Assessors and verifiers must be able to meet SQA's general requirements for technical/occupational competence as outlined in the Systems and Qualification Approval Guide.

Assessment of the PDA in Decision Making and Innovation is at the discretion of the centre. However, where possible, assessment should centre on the candidate's own organisational experience, as a manager and/or as someone being managed. Candidates can produce a report or reports covering the requirements of the two Units which make up the PDA. They may be able to make use of material that they have developed as part of their work role, eg a proposal for innovation. It is also possible to use case studies where candidates do not have access to suitable information from their own work experience. Candidates can be encouraged, in delivery and in assessment, to draw lessons for their own managerial situation. They should, for example, identify an approach to decision making which they think will suit them and their situation.

Group Award code: G9CM 49 (24 SCQF credit points)
SCQF level: 9


The PDA in Decision Making and Innovation at SCQF level 9 consists of two mandatory Units:

Decision Making for Managers — F5GG 36                        

Management: Organisational Innovation — DV80 36